Wednesday, June 7 through Sunday, June 11, Sporting Kansas City welcomed 37 teams and 17 MLS Academies to Kansas City for the annual Patterson Cup, one of the most prestigious Academy events for the U-12, U-13 and U-14 age groups. MLS clubs from all across the country showed out at the tournament as the younger ages of the academy system concluded their season with the highly competitive tournament.
Sporting KC was represented in all age groups. The U-12s made a run to the semi-finals, the U-13s placed second in their group and the U-14s earned three results on the weekend. Sporting's U-12s drew with Inter Miami and Atlanta United II before clutching up in must-win group stage matches against RSL Arizona and Atlanta United. They were defeated by Chicago FIre who went on to beat Atlanta in the finals to win the age group.
The SKC U-13s took a 3-2 loss against FC Cincinnati in their opening match. After taking the lead on a banger of a free kick, Sporting conceded twice. Following a leveler in the second half, a Sporting KC red card forced the team to play down a man for the remainder of the match and Cincinnati would find the winner late in the final moments of the contest. Sporting was defeated by Atlanta United but responded well, winning their final two group stage matches before drawing with Austin FC and defeating FC Charlotte.
The U-14s, coming off a very congested MLS NEXT schedule in the month of May and early June, were barely beaten by Nashville SC, drew with D.C. United and suffered a 2-1 loss to the Seattle Sounders. They popped Portland 3-1 in the final group stage match and drew with FC Dallas in the first consolation match. FC Cincinnati scored late in the final match of the weekend to hand Sporting a 1-0 loss.
On Sunday, Chicago claimed the U-12 title, Houston Dynamo took the U-13 age group and Atlanta United won at the U-14 level.
The Patterson Cup is named after Sporting KC co-owner Neal Patterson and his wife Jeanne, both of whom lost their lives to cancer in 2017. For more than a decade, the Patterson Family helped transform Sporting KC into the model MLS organization it is today. Their unwavering commitment to the growth of soccer in Kansas City has been manifested through the development of state-of-the-art facilities, technological innovation at sporting events and significant investment in soccer at the youth level.
The inaugural Patterson Cup took place in March 2019 with six MLS academies squaring off at the U-12 level. The 2023 edition was the second year in a row featuring all three age groups, continuing to grow the game at the youth soccer level as was the Patterson Family's mission.
The Sporting KC U-13s and U-14s will return to the pitch in August for preseason. Sporting's U-17s will compete in the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs while the U-19s and U-15s play in the MLS NEXT Cup Showcase from June 17-25 at the Toyota Soccer Center in Texas. To keep up to date with everything going on in the Sporting Kansas City Academy, fans can follow @SKCAcademy on Twitter and Instagram or head to SportingKCAcademy.com.